Statement by Bodo Ellmers (EURODAD) in Round Table D on behalf of the CSO FfD Group and WWG on FfD

Statement on Debt

CSOs share the concern stated at the FFD Forum’s opening session that the recurrence of debt crises would jeopardize the SDG implementation

We also share the view that we don’t have the necessary and fully effective institutions in place to prevent and resolve debt crises.

What the FfD Process can do:

  • Responsible Lending and Borrowing: The UNCTAD principles are good. We need compliance, and we need to monitor compliance and good practice. The latter could be done by the IATF report.
  • IATF Report: Also use the UN’s Independent Expert on Debt and Human Rights country case studies, they monitor the impact of debt and debt crises on social and human development
  • IATF Report: Missing is the indicator “Debt service on public debt as percentage of government revenue”. This should be included, this is the indicator that shows how much public money for SDG implementation goes missing due to debt service.
  • Debt Restructuring Frameworks: We have since last year Basic Principles of a voluntary nature. There is a need to strengthen these, and there is a mandate given by last year’s debt Resolution to discuss it here.
  • Vulture funds legislation: We should showcase good practice and perhaps even start to develop a model law.
  • Debt sustainability analysis: Develop a methodology that take the financing needs of the SDGs into account. The current IMF and WB methodology does not do that.

Having said that: The FfD Forum is a good forum to discuss debt issues. But problems are too complex and finding solutions is too urgent. One meeting/session per year is not enough:

We suggest to set up an Ad Hoc Committee on General Assembly level mandated to create the necessary institutions for the prevention and resolution of debt crises. This Committee should be informed by relevant expert groups.